tv All In With Chris Hayes MSNBC August 14, 2013 8:00pm-9:01pm PDT
trepidation from her people regarding the public life. >> nick, thank you very much for joining us tonight. >> thank you, lawrence. chris hayes is up next. good evening from new york, i'm chris hayes. tonight on "all in." a little more than a month since egyptians gathered by the millions to celebrate the overthrow of their president. that country is in a state of emergency. also tonight, a growing boycott for the winter olympics in russia. it turns out harvey fierstein had a real problem with our coverage. tonight he will be here to set me straight. stay tuned for that. we must begin with the horrifying violence unfolding in
egypt, in what looks to be a massacre of demonstrators during a military crackdown at two protest camps in cairo. 235 civilians have been killed. according to egyptian health officials, with more than 2,000 people injured. richard engel was there. >> security forces are firing into the side streets. positions between protesters, security forces, all over cairo, and this one looks like it's about to get very ugly [ speaking foreign language ]
[ speaking foreign language ] >> they are lying about everything. they say we have weapons, we have cannons inside. and if we have weapons or cannons or whatever they said how can we -- we didn't defend ourselves. this is a massacre, do you know how many people have been killed today? i was here about 9:00 a.m. from 9:00 a.m. until now, i was an eyewitness to about 15 killed. and almost 24 injured. >> more people coming -- >> as the wrenching interview proceeded, more civilians arrived and morgues were filling up as egypt's military took control of the camps. the fatalities exclude the members of egypt's security forces who have also been killed in the clashes. three journalists were killed a
cameraman from sky news, a reporter for a dubai paper and an egyptian journalist. the temporary civilian leader has now declared a monthlong state of emergency with the backing of egypt's military. the interim vice president has resigned in protest, some security forces were backed by bulldozers. in this video, a police vehicle can be seen tumbling over the sixth of october bridge in egypt's capital. pushed from the bridge by protesters. five soldiers were reportedly inside. there was also evidence of protesters in some instances firing back. the unrest is not limited to cairo. the local council building was taken over by promorsi demonstrators. a military that a little more than a month ago was being cheered by revolutionaries and
celebrated by millions in the streets. then the obama administration avoided calling that action a military coup. the same position is harder to maintain today. joining me now from cairo is ayman mohyeldin. what precipitated the violence today? what happened? >> well, over the course of the last several weeks since the removal of president morsi from power. his supporters have formed an umbrella foundation made up of islamist parties. one that's widened its base over the course of the last several weeks. they have staged two massive sit-ins, one in a northern part of the city of cairo, and the other on the western part of the city.
those two encampments have become sore points for the government. they have blocked down major parts of cairo, more importantly, the government felt they had become a threat to national security, and disrupted the public peace. and more importantly, that they were being used to rally crowds to more marches and incitements. the government had been threatening it was going to go in with force if necessary, to try to break up these protests, since the muslim brotherhood refused to negotiate or find a peaceful way to end these demonstrations. that's what led to the clashes unfolding now. over the actual logistical part of it, the police moved in to these demonstrations, they came under attack, they were acting in self-defense. as you heard from our reporting, our witnesses and others are giving a different narrative saying they were engaged in peaceful protests, early hours this morning, when they came under attack involving live ammunition and tear gas at the
end of the egyptian security forces. >> the sheer numbers we are seeing to take off on that last point, looks -- it's being described obviously by those protesters as a massacre, the numbers of fatalities, 257, a staggering number, there are 43 fatalities of the security forces. we have reports of the 17-year-old daughter of one of the leaders of the muslim brotherhood who has been killed. it does read like it is something like a massacre. >> this is the very difficult point that egypt finds itself in, everybody is right. everybody is wrong. there's no doubt that there is a little bit of truth in what everyone is saying. on the one hand the government is correct in saying that there are throws using weapons among the protesters that are supporting the muslim brotherhood and supporting the ousted president mohammed morsi. the videos have come out showing that. there are reports of a lot of supporters of the former president attacking churches.
attacking targets or buildings belonging to minorities and other facilities across the country. they have painted the picture of them as being perpetrators of violence. there is credibility to that. to what extent, you can use that to paint the entire brush of the thousands of supporters who have gone to the streets in support of mohammed morsi. that is the question that everyone is concerned about. is this disproportionate use of force, and that is the concern among human rights activists, and a lot of people who say the military and police are using very strong handed tactics in what is by far and large a peaceful demonstration, we've been to that square, we've been to several squares. we've seen for ourselves, there are women, there are children. the large part of these demonstrations have been peaceful. and that is why from their perspective, they are saying that this is a massacre. the police came in here with strong tactics, they did not do any of the things that people
here were expecting them to do, and that includes be sieging the square, perhaps firing water cannons to try to dispel them. there were reports that the police were saying they warned the protesters to leave the square this morning. none of that has been substantiated by the actual protesters, in fact the exact opposite. they say the police moved in with very strong tactics, firing live ammunition, and blockaded all four sides of the square, making it impossible for people to get out. those are people that included the 17-year-old daughter of one of the leaders of the muslim brotherhood. several other women and minors as well. >> ayman mohyeldin, thank you very much. joining me on the phone from cairo is a correspondent for democracy now and a fellow at the nation. you have been tweeting out remarkable pictures today. what did you see today? >> well, chris, today i was really -- scenes of chaos and bloodshed. certainly the most violent episode that i've witnessed as a reporter here for the past two and a half years covering this revolution. there was the crackle of machine gunfire echoing throughout the northeastern neighborhood in
cairo. there was tear gas filling the air, mixed with the black smoke of tires burning. there were lights by the protesters and just to get into the encampment while this raid was going on. have you to make this perilous run across a road that was exposed to sniper fire. one man was shot in the head next to me, as we ran with what looked to be bird shot pellets. some protesters took to even writing their names and phone numbers of who to call if they were shot on their arms or legs writing it down. and inside the main medical facility, which is a four-story building next to a mosque in the square, the hospitals really very tragic scenes. i personally saw over 60 bodies, corporations just strewn on the ground, packed very closely together. most of the people i saw were shot in the head or in the chest.
the floor was slippery with blood. i mean it was completely overwhelmed with casualties. the dead and wounded were being brought in every few minutes. they have to keep the windows closed to keep the tear gas out. it was unbearably hot inside. many of the people that i spoke to said that the attack began sometime after 6:00 in the morning. and there was no warning. and the casualties started coming in quickly after that. the ministry of interior has spoken repeatedly of its gradual plans for disbursal for surrounding the protests and doing this kind of gradual escalation. but it seems that they just came in very hard and the ambulances did not have access to the medical facility. and many people who may have been rescued who were critically
wounded did not have access to proper medical clearance. >> shareef, can i ask you -- >> it's a very violent and tragic scene today. >> there is a country that it seems like is increasingly polarized between different camps, there was, it seemed mass celebration of the military's takeover from the muslim brotherhood just a little more than a month ago. what happens tomorrow? what is the ripple effect in egyptian public opinion now. does this turn the massive opinion against the government or do they see this as a necessary step to preserve law and order. >> it's difficult to say, chris, what we do know is the country is extremely polarized, more so than it has been at any other time since mubarak's ouster. those who are opponents of morsi, the vast majority of them, i think supported this kind of crackdown, we heard shrill media coverage, painting all of the muslim brotherhood, and all of the morsi protesters as terrorists and labelling this as a war on terror. we heard the national foundation praising the police for today's
actions as well as the cabinet doing so. much of the business and traditional elites as well as the security establishment. defending the use of this force. it's very difficult to say where the country is going, when you have thousands if not millions of people who feel disenfranchised. cut out completely from the political process, and who may be driven even further to take violent reprisal and we've seen the tax on at least 23 churches around the country. and so, you know, this is not bode well for the future, and it also opens the door for a more firmer authoritarian regressive political order with the police and the military reempowered. >> thank you so much. >> thank you, chris. >> the stop and frisk election. now, how it's turned politics upside down when we come back. the amazing story of a man who is exonerated for a crime he did not commit after being helped by a woman who was later
the amazing story of a man who is exonerated for a crime he did not commit after being helped by a woman who was later fired. and the playwright and actor harvey fierstein will be here coming up. [ beeping ] ♪ [ male announcer ] we don't just certify our pre-owned vehicles. we inspect, analyze and recondition each one, until it's nothing short of a genuine certified pre-owned... mercedes-benz for the next new owner. ♪ hurry in to your authorized mercedes-benz dealer for 1.99% financing during our certified pre-owned sales event through september 3rd.
no matter where they live or what they look like. i'd say that even if he weren't my dad. >> that incredibly effective campaign ad comes from a guy who is against all conventional wisdom and against much of the shock and horror of the new york city's elite. he's the candidate who from the beginning staked out the strongest position against the city's controversial stop and frisk policy. when the federal judge ruled that policy violates the constitutional rights, bill de blasio's position was so popular, that every single candidate seemed to be taking it up as their own. >> when i'm mayor, unconstitutional stops will end. >> the conversation about stop and frisk are people who are being stopped who did nothing wrong. >> stop and frisk has been misused and abused. >> it's unconscionable that so many people could be racially profiled. >> judge calls it unconstitutional and the guy who
always opposed it, wins a round of polling, and suddenly, no one can condemn stop and frisk strongly enough. >> new york city is home to 1.6 million 2012 obama voters. there are approximately 3 million active registered democrats in the city. this is a blue, blue, blue city. and yet, there has not been a democratic mayor in new york city in 20 years, and arguably the last new york city mayor was laguardia who served in the '30s and '40s. for generations now, it's not been a city that's produced the kind of outfront progressive leader you would think it would given the numbers, that could change this year, as bill de blasio makes a play to take up the high profile new york city progressive leader. joining me now is bill de blasio. currently the public advocate for the city of new york. people are saying that the stop and frisk decision is what propelled you into the poll.
do you think that's right? >> i think it's one of the reasons. i've been talking about the disparities in this city. my whole campaign is about fighting inequality in new york city. that disparity is sharpest when it comes to policing. two systems of policing, separate and unall-. the judge i think made a fundamental decision to reset the equation to the good of new york city. of course mayor bloomberg attacked the judge, and once again is trying to tell us if we don't continue things the way they are, we're somehow coddling murderers and criminals. >> i want to play this clip of the mayor attacking it. given the fact that your son dontae is here, stars in this ad. i want you to listen to this line. >> i worry for my kids and your
kids. i worry for you and i worry for me much crime can come back any time the criminals think that they're going to get away with things. >> why did he say that? >> i think mayor bloomberg has never understood that guaranteeing people's constitutional rights is supposed to walk hand in hand with public safety in this country. it's not a false choice between the two. we've had 20 years of reduction in crime. you know what's standing in the way of more reduction in crime. the fact that police and communities have so much tension between them in neighborhoods. >> there's two cases, i'll give one and then the other. the first case, comes from howard wolfson, you worked on the hillary clinton senatorial campaign with in 2000. he's your guy, the subtext there is, high crime, irresponsible liberal governance.
chase out the technocratic data. and turn the city into this liberal petri dish where all sorts of craziness festers. >> we have to address fundamental inequalities that are holding back the city. what howard said there, reductionist would be a nice way of putting it. it's a misrepresentation of what's going on. i want to tax wealthy new yorkers so we can fix our schools. i don't what would bring us forward more than having full day pre-k for every child. i want to end the stop and frisk era that has made it possible for communities to have the relation ship they need to be able to go safe going forward. howard is presenting a stereotype, which is inappropriate and doesn't refer to the reality of the city today. this is the same howard wolfson when i offered a plan for
stopping stop and frisk, said i must want to hand over gun control to the aclu. that's fear mongering. >> here's the other critique. it's perfectly nice to say all this lib ram stuff, you're on the campaign trail. you campaign in poetry. this city has a lot of powerful people. and basically, in my lifetime, the only people who have been successful mayors have been maniacs, i don't mean maniacs in a clinical sense. they seem to relish telling people to go [ bleep ] themselves. disabuse people of that fear? >> i relish making the changes we need. i led the opposition to bloomberg, when he wanted to change the term limits law. to give himself the third term. multibillionaire, he had the
democratic party establishment on his side. the big business leaders. i took them all on to fight to protect the will of the people. didn't bother me one bit. i have the steel i need to take on this fight. i think the fallacy is you need this kind of negative personality no, in fact, times have changed. people in the city want these inequalities addressed. they feel urgency, 46% of new yorkers at or near the poverty level. it's a fact that came out from a city government study just two months ago. they will back up a leader who works for progressive change. that's the x factor here. maybe that wasn't as true in politics before -- >> no good deed goes unpunished is especially true in the case of one of the people we're going to introduce you to next. well, did you know the ancient pyramids were actually a mistake?
right now as i speak to you, there's a man in kansas city who was in prison for a crime he did not commit. he's been exonerated based on dna evidence and the woman who helped him get his freedom. she got fired for doing so. robert nelson was awaiting trial almost 30 years ago, when an anonymous tip came in saying the two brothers in jail at the time of the robbery had committed a string of rapes nearby. police couldn't find those brothers, they did find robert nelson who happened to be awaiting robbery trial with his brother. that led to robert nelson being convicted for rape and sentenced
to 70 years in prison for a crime he maintains he did not commit. in 2009 nelson filed a motion seeking dna testing that had not been available at the time of his trial. that motion was denied on a technicality. he was denied by the same judge on a technicality. after two failed motions, robert nelson's sister, distraught and wondering why the motions were being denied called up sharon snyder, a 77-year-old great grandmother looking for answers. snyder responded by going way above and beyond her duty. she went and found a successfully filed motion seeking dna testing from a different case. she blacked out the names and gave it to nelson's sister as a model. nelson and his sister submitted a third motion based off that document. and finally, that motion was granted. and lo and behold the dna evidence revealed that robert nelson is innocent for the brutal rape he was serving time
for. he was released from prison this june. the dna tested and the folks from the innocence project who worked on behalf of nelson and in cooperation with prosecutors. found the two men who committed the rape. for her effort, helping to free an innocent man from prison, sharon snyder was fired by judge david burke. the judge who denied the original two motions and granted the third for a violation of cannon seven. the court rules and warns of the risk of offering a course of action. i'm joined by robert nelson and sharon snyder for their first national television interview together. my first question to you is, how did it feel to spend those years in prison, knowing you had been wrongly convicted and how did it feel to get the news that you were being released?
>> it was exhausting. at times when i was in prison. i wanted to give up. because it took -- i filed three dna motions. two dna motions and the judge denied them both. during the course of the time i was incarcerated, i gave up hope. then me and my sister both gave up hope. >> sharon, if you knew when you helped out robert's sister, if you knew what would happen, you would be fired for what you did, if you could go back in time and have the choice again, would you do it again? >> oh, yes, i would do it again. i am so happy that he got exonerated on this charge and felt that that would happen. or he wouldn't have filed that motion to start out with. >> do you -- >> i was -- >> i would have done it. >> are you angry at the fact that you have apparently been punished for doing something that has led to a wrong being
righted, to justice being served? >> i think they severely punished me financially by suspending me without pay. when other persons in the court system had embezzled a lot of money and they were suspended, but with pay. so i thought that was the severe punishment for me, and to make me retire long before i planned my retirement in march of next year hurt me. and i think it was too severe. i think -- >> robert, how do you feel about what sharon did? >> i feel -- she's -- to me, she is truly my angel. because without her help, i think i would still be in prison and probably would have died in there. the motions i filed kept being denied by the judge. >> what does it say to you about
the system you worked 34 years inside of. that what happened to robert could have happened, what do you take away as a lesson from this episode? >> well, the lesson is is that people need to help parties that are going pros se. what i did was give him a public record that he was able to use. and i think that the law should be changed that judges should be taken out of the mix on deciding these dna motions. and they should automatically be granted. it will either show that they were guilty or they were innocent. >> and robert, what are your plans for your future now out in the world? >> it's amazing.
it's nice to be free. i'm planning on getting a job. and i'm also planning on donating some time with charity. to help guys who have been in my situation. be like a mentor to them. >> robert nelson and sharon snyder, thank you both for being here, i really appreciate it. >> thank you, chris. >> thank you. we'll be right back with click three. re agents sit down with you and ask. being active. and being with this guy. [ male announcer ] getting to know you is how we help you choose the humana medicare plan that works best for you. mi familia. ♪ [ male announcer ] we want to help you achieve your best health, so you can keep doing the things that are important to you. taking care of our customers. taking care of her. and the next thing on our list is bungee jumping. [ male announcer ] helping you... now that's what's important to us. [ male announcer ] helping you... i dbefore i dosearch any projects on my home. i love my contractor, and i am so thankful to angie's list for bringing us together. find out why more than two million members count on angie's list. angie's list -- reviews you can trust.
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on monday we did a segment about the crackdown of gay people in russia and what impact it's having on the olympics set to take place there this winter. harvey fierstein took exception to our coverage the story. >> the first thing this beautiful time lapse, it's called night vision. it's the work of phil shepherd who travelled through 36 cities in 21 days and strung together the thousands of photographs to create this film. in all, he created monuments and
buildings from over 20,000 photographs. what's extra cool about it, this project was almost entirely funded on kickstart. you're probably looking at these incredible images and wondering, how did he do that? we have the exclusive click three behind the scenes video. >> kids, big ben. parliament again. >> well played. the second awesomest thing on the internet today kvell.com, has spread like wildfire. it's the greatest most elaborate coming of age video since tracy jordan's werewolf bar mitzvah on 30 rock. as you are about to see, sam's grand entrance was a doozy.
♪ >> accompanied by nine backup dancers, sam became a man, that man is now becoming an internet legend. the bar mitzvah was the best day of his life. the third awesomest thing on the internet today, hey girl feel my sweater, you know what it's made of, boyfriend material. hey, girl, i like big cuts and i cannot lie. super fans have created the hey girl, it's chris hayes, this blog isn't affiliated with
msnbc, but we'd love to get affiliated with you. my alter ego is offering the best in pickup line material. there may be a debate over who will be present in 2016, you will always be present in my heart. you want me to listen to you talk about your day, i'm all in. there's no competition. you can find all the links for tonight's click 3 on our website. what are you doing? oh, hey. using night-vision goggles to keep an eye on my spicy buffalo wheat thins.
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crackdown continues in russia, where it's open season in the country's lgbt citizens. the spotlight has gained momentum over the past few weeks. at issue is the country's recently implemented ban on so-called gay propaganda. a law so broadly written it allows authorities to arrest and detain anyone wearing a rainbow flag pin. the pressure is on the international olympic committee, the governing body of the games. i'll see jacques rhodes asking for clarification on the law from the russian government. some athletes have chosen to speak out in support of lgbt folks. yesterday nick simmons won the silver at the world athletic championships in moscow and dedicated his medal to his gay
and lesbian friends. he became the first athlete to openly criticize russian's law on the soil. if there's anything i can do to champion the cause further, i will shy of getting arrested. it's easy to see why the story continues to pick up steam. >> i've been hearing a lot of people say, the idea of boycotting the games is crazy and misguided. the idea of the spirit of the games is to cross these boundaries and athletes to go and compete and perform. >> i've never been a proponent of mixing politics with sports. this is their one moment. many athletes were really hurt in 1980 when we boycotted russia. i think it sends the wrong message. it hurts the wrong people. >> while that was airing, harvey fierstein was watching and he would take to facebook to vent
his frustration. i watched the chris hayes show last night with open mouth. one would swear the entire controversy was about the stupid olympics. i wondered if he would be so off topic if our elected officials threatened to pass a law that removed his baby from his home. might that wake these folks up? that's what's happening to us, mr. hayes. joining me now to work it out is harvey fierstein. he's the winner of six toni awards. you were really upset about that? >> i was. what's going on in russia is absolutely frightening. even in your intro right now you talked about one law. there are three laws, one saying that gay couples or singles may not adopt. the third is the propaganda. the fourth law which was not
passed which is rumored by the press to have been ready to be passed was one that said that children would be removed from gay and lesbian households. that meant whether they were adopted or they were your biological children, but hopefully the spotlight that we're putting on now has stopped that law just as we stopped these laws in armenia. >> there are horrible laws discriminating against lgbt folks everywhere in the world. >> you remember when the aids crisis first hit, i would have people say to me, why are we spending so much energy on aids, there's cancer too? one doesn't negate the other. the gay community has in our history been attacked in every way you can attack a group. there's nothing that the human race has thought of to tear down other people that hasn't been used on us. thankfully we have over the centuries, over the decades and over the last few years made
some great strides where people realize we're just human beings, we are your family, we're not a strange group from somewhere else. we belong in your family, we're teachers, parents, children. those strides have been made. my feeling is, at this point it is time to stop being scapegoats for the rest of the world. putin is not doing these laws because he believes this. i don't know what his real agenda is, but i have to assume it has something to do with money, with putin, it always does. i assume he's trying to get his right wing people behind him, and everyone loves to hate a homo. he gets the church behind him, he has his wing behind him. and he can go out and do whatever it is he's doing and no one's looking that way. >> do you think there's something hypocritical or misplaced for americans who haven't yet won the victory here for equality and who are in a country where gay adoption was outlawed in the states very recently to turn the attention
to russia, particularly if the way that your median russian voter perceives that, is as these nefarious outsiders coming in and telling us what to do? >> no, because you must fight injustice wherever that injustice is. i will fight that injustice here on american soil. i will fight it in russia, i will fight it in uganda. it's time for us to put our foot down and say we will not be the scapegoat of the world any longer. >> the other night, richard said he thought this was the beginning of a new phase in the gay rights movement. >> that's my feeling, as we're sitting here talking downtown queer nation new york is having a town hall meeting where we're just deciding what should our response be? what do we have the stomach for as an organization, as a community. what is it we want to take on? my feeling is, this is a moment as clear to me as stonewall was
that we can say, here's the line in the sand. when you call us names, we're going to answer back. when you demonize us in your churches we're going to answer back, when politicians make up stuff, we're going to answer back. the thing that's more horrible about russia, putin says he's doing this to protect children. now everyone knows that 25 to 40% of all gay youth attempt suicide. the statistics go up when a law is passed against someone. there's something official done. you want to protect children, you're killing children. and then in the united states, i'm not sure about the figures in other countries, 40% of the homeless children are gay and lesbian, either because they've been thrown out by their own parents or they have so much self-loathing they feel their parents will never love them and they leave home. if you love your children, have you to be in there. >> how dire, i've seen in some
of the blogs i've been reading and commentary and lgbt activists, i've seen people posting about hitler in the olympics in 1936. and there was a skirmish posted in which hitler agreed to take down anti-jewish propaganda. there are people who are making hitler parallels get people incredibly wary. >> i was bringing you this great big book that i bought at the holocaust museum on propaganda and hitler, just to show you how it starts this way. it's -- >> you think it's that dire. >> i do. it starts really small. it starts with a small community. you know, whether -- in russia, it's a small community that says we will not adopt homosexuals any more. what it allows is for people to be beaten up and for people to look the other way. like i said, you had a young woman on, i think she wrote for the new republic.
i lived in russia, and when i lived in russia, can i tell you, they all think that homosexuality comes from the west. all of this protesting just proves they're right. i wanted to reach across and slap her across the face. what if i grabbed you, threw you into the back of a paddywagon and dragged you off to jail because the mentioned the word homosexual. how would you feel about it then? >> she is making a point about what the cultural reception of the activities will be. >> you cannot -- we're on television, but you cannot just ignore evil. when evil shows its face you have to answer. when you don't answer. look what happened, you were talking about hitler, so we went to the olympics in germany, right? yes, they took down the anti-jewish posters for two weeks, what happened? owens won a gold medal and then 6 million jews were killed. what if the world had turned
their back on hitler, what if the world had left germany empty for those olympics? certainly nothing as bad abc news what did happen? >> i think the question is about the efficacy of this tactic -- >> the stoli thing, you said -- >> we're going to talk to him about it, yes, i know, i know, i know. >> just because a corporation -- because a corporation is hiding its money, all of a sudden they're innocent. >> you're eating dan savidges time. >> actor and playwright harvey fierstein. dan savidge has a different opinion on all of this, he's was not a fan of our coverage either, he joins me next. ♪ [ female announcer ] pop in a whole new kind of clean with tide pods. three chambers. three times the stain removal power. pop in. stand out.
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joining me now is dan savidge, author of the book, american savidge, insights, fights and slights on faith, love, sex and politics. you've been one of the chief organizers behind the dump stoli campaign. it's probably the most well known russian brand. you can learn about it at dumprussianvodka.com. all of the russian vodkas. >> what role do the russian vodkas have in creating what are putin promulgated laws that are targeting heinously targeting lgbt folks in russia. >> the goal of the boycott is to target an iconic product. and vodka is russia's most iconic product to raise awareness around the world.
what i really objected to in your coverage on monday night. you said, i called for a boycott of stoli. they're out there pushing the lie, if i could read you something briefly which is, the distributor in 2008 to vanity fair, as it is sold outside russia is disuntilled in russia and moved from russia to latvia where it's put in bottles. there's nothing added, nothing taken away. it's made with genuine authentic russian vodka. it's a legitimate target of the boycott. >> what it seems to me is, the anger is being directed at this target because this is a target as a possible one to get. as opposed to the one that is responsible for what's going on there. and i also think. i want you to respond to the idea. are you working with lgbt russian activists, are you worried about the possibility of domestic backlash over this kind of thing? >> the situation could hardly
get worse for lgbt people. the law basically creates a situation where you cannot be openly gay, someone held up a sign that said he was for tolerance and he was beaten up by russian paratroopers and carried off by the police. not the people who beat him up. 30 russian gay lesbian bi and trans activists signed a letter to help raise awareness around the world about the situation in russia. the vodka boycott has been a huge success. the boycott of russian vodka is working whether you like it or not. >> there's also talk now about
putting pressure on the olympics, i should say full disclosure, this network will be carrying those olympics. what do you think about that? >> i haven't taken a position one way or the other. i think the arguments are persuasive. steven frye's point about moving the olympics is legit. i think the world looking back on 1936 would say, yeah, we probably should have at the last minute moved those olympics and not handed the nazis that pr victory. we're not comparing the situation right now in russia to what went on -- what happened to the jews. what's happening in russia to lgbt people isn't what happened to jews in 1943, it's what happened to them in 1933. people didn't speak up at the volume they should have, and
we're speaking up now to try to prevent that catastrophe from unfolding. >> thank you so much. i appreciate it. >> that is all in for this evening, the rachel maddow show starts right now. >> thanks, chris. thanks to you at home for staying with us this hour. this is one of those days in the news when there is a lot going on. just in domestic news, a lot going on. son of the famous civil rights leader, jesse jackson, jr. was sentenced to two and a half years in federal prison today for taking campaign money and spending it on himself. his wife will also do a year in prison because of the tax fraud side of what they plead guilty too. now that the federal defense of marriage act has been dismantled by the supreme court, the pentagon announced the new rules for service members who want to marry their same sex partners. in north carolina today where